Saturday, February 25, 2012

Beer Review: Dark Intrigue

Reviewing the Dark Intrigue from Victory Brewing Company.
Score: 83

2011 vintage corked-and-caged bottle served in a Half Acre tulip glass and enjoyed on 02/26/12 after helping a friend move into a new apartment. Review is from iPhone notes.

Appearance: Jet black color, totally opaque. This is a vacuum for light. Four fingers of super foamy mocha colored head at pour that gradually settles into a thin layer atop glass. Decent lacing, but poor retention. 3.5/5

Smell: Roasted chocolate, dark chocolate, black cherry, blackberry, and fruit esters. Some lemon zest too. A hint of "rubbing alcohol" appears as the beer warms. 4/5

Taste: Dark roasted chocolate flavor upfront, cut by a light berry/black cherry flavor and a decent amount of booziness. Charcoal and tobacco on midpalate and toward finish. Lingering finish of bittersweet dark chocolate. More chocolate and less berry flavor become apparent as the beer layers. As the beer warms, it develops an additional alcohol/boozy sting towards the finish. Not detecting much, if any, bourbon barrel aging flavor. 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, low carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel. Dry and slightly sweet finish. 4/5

Overall: While not a bad brew, Dark Intrigue is a huge downgrade from the base beer (Storm King). At $15 for a 750 ml bottle, this brew is completely over priced. This beer utilizes too much boozy berry flavor to contrast the heavy stout chocolatiness and seemingly lacks any barrel characteristics. I like my bourbon barrel aged beers to have some degree of sweet oaky vanilla and raisin flavor, but this brew had none of that. Maybe some age can improve this beer, but I cannot imagine how Dark Intrigue will develop for the better over time (save for less booziness on the palate) given its flavor profile. From what I hear, Dark Intrigue will never be brewed again, so perhaps it is worth seeking out as curiosity -- just understand that it is not particularly worth the price tag.

Recommendation: Skip this one and just buy a six pack of Victory Storm King with your money.

Pairings: Chocolate cake.

Cost: $14.99 for a 750 ml bottle.

1 comment:

  1. I did not give you permission to display my kitchen on your blog. :)